14 ACC DOCKET’S TOP 10 30-SOME THINGS | A SPECIAL SUPPLEMEN T OF ACC DOCKE T
In-house counsel often describe their roles as being “embedded in the business.” Few are as
involved as Jennifer Holsman Tetreault, who provides legal advice for the entire West region
of US Foods, the second largest food distribution company in the United States. Last year
the company decided its field operations would be more effective with a dedicated lawyer
working side by side with each regional leadership team.
Tetreault is a generalist. Based in Phoenix, Arizona, she has multiple weekly meetings
with her regional team, which includes the regional president, the regional vice presidents of
local and national sales , the regional vice president of finance, the regional human resource
business partner, and other executives. By discussing strategy and business concepts with
in-house counsel, the company can identify possible problems before they arise. She also
serves as counsel for the other leadership teams in the West region: Seattle, Salt Lake City,
Los Angeles, San Diego, San Francisco, Denver, and Albuquerque. She helps with everything
from contracts to employment issues to mergers and acquisitions. When she needs specific
expertise, she will often call the company’s headquarters in Rosemont, Illinois, rather than a
She also handles regulatory tasks. As a food producer, US Foods is subject to the
Food Safety Quality Assurance Act, which mandates refrigeration for certain foods, and
California’s Prop 65 statute, which requires companies to clearly disclose products that contain BPA, an organic synthetic compound, on the label.
Her work helps the company deliver billions of dollars of food in the West region. Many
of the casinos in Las Vegas contract with US Foods, as do government agencies. “Often
when there is a forest fire, we provide the food services to the firefighters who go out to fight
the wildfires,” she says. The company is more than just a food delivery operation though.
US Foods also offers technology tools that help customers anticipate when market demand
might surge, such as when spring training commences in Arizona. The system helps both
small and national restaurant customers optimize their inventory and sales.
Tetreault’s connection to Arizona runs deep. In college, at Arizona State University,
she donned the uniform of the school mascot: Sparky the Sun Devil. She is still strongly
connected to the school. Her first in-house role was at the Arizona State University Alumni
Association, where she managed internal and external programs and handled the legal responsibilities for the organization, while simultaneously teaching a course at the law school.
She continues to teach US law and legal analysis to a diverse group of students, which
sometimes includes Japanese judges, professional athletes, and Middle Eastern healthcare
professionals who are pursuing an LLM. “Every semester is totally different and I love it,”
she explains, “It reminds me to stay connected to my own learning, and I look forward to
having the connection with the students.” 30
REGION LEGAL COUNSEL
2017 TOP 10 30-SOMETHING jennifer holsman tetreault